Benbrook Reservoir - 2009 Survey Report
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Prepared by Thomas Hungerford and Raphael Brock
Inland Fisheries Division
District 2-D, Fort Worth, Texas
This is the authors' summary from a 27-page report. For a copy of the complete report, use the download link in the sidebar.
Fish populations in Benbrook Reservoir were surveyed in 2009 with electrofishing and trap nets, and in 2010 using gill nets. This report summarizes the results of the surveys and contains a management plan for the reservoir based on those findings.
Benbrook Reservoir is a 3,635-acre impoundment located on the Clear Fork of the Trinity River approximately 10 miles southwest of Fort Worth. Water level fluctuates widely in the reservoir. Benbrook Reservoir has consistently been eutrophic. Habitat consisted of standing timber and rocks.
Important sport fish included white bass, palmetto bass, largemouth bass, white crappie, and catfish. The management plan from the 2005 survey report included stocking palmetto bass at 10 fish/acre annually. Largemouth bass have historically been managed with state-wide minimum length limit of 14 inches. Florida largemouth bass were introduced in the mid-to-late 1970s and stocked again in 2007. Blue catfish were stocked in 1990 and 1991 to capitalize on the abundant prey base. Recent efforts to improve the fish habitat and angler success have included construction of brush-piles in various locations.
- Prey species: Threadfin shad continued to be abundant. Electrofishing catch of gizzard shad was high. Electrofishing catch of bluegills and longear sunfish was much lower than in previous surveys. The reservoir was approximately 5 feet above conservation pool when the electrofishing survey was conducted which made it difficult to get to the bank.
- Catfishes: The channel catfish catch rate nearly doubled from the previous sample. Blue catfish numbers in Benbrook Reservoir declined from the previous sample.
- Temperate basses: White bass, yellow bass, and palmetto bass were present. White bass were collected at a higher rate than in previous years. Yellow bass, which may have been introduced through a pipeline connecting Cedar Creek Reservoir to Benbrook Reservoir, were collected in gill nets for the first time 2006 and continued to be abundant. Palmetto bass abundance remained good over the past two surveys.
- Largemouth bass: Largemouth bass were captured in low abundance. Only one fish over 14 inches was collected. Largemouth bass body condition was poor.
- Crappies: Size and body condition of white crappie continued to be good, and abundance was much higher than the previous sample. Black crappie were sampled for the first time since 2001, but in low numbers.
- Stock palmetto bass at a rate of 10/acre annually.
- Conduct standard sport fish monitoring in 2013-2014 with an additional electrofishing survey in 2010, and an additional gill netting survey in 2012.
- Attempt habitat improvements through water willow plantings.
Performance Report as required by Federal Aid in Sport Fish Restoration Act Texas Federal Aid Project F-30-R-35 Statewide Freshwater Fisheries Monitoring and Management Program